The year is 1960, the month is July and the Shadows – who were probably most famous for their work as Cliff Richards backing band, were enjoying a 5 week stint at the top of the hit parade courtesy of a Jerry Lordon written number inspired by the 1954 western “Apache”. The song re-appeared numerous times over the next ten years before The Incredible Bongo Band bought their funk fuelled bongo driven break monster to the table. Micheal Viner the MGM exec is widely credited with putting the Incredible Bongo Band project together, using the MGM studios when they weren’t booked up and utilising any musicians (who were never credited) passing through the MGM offices to record the tracks. Rumour has it that one or two tracks from the 1973 debut album included Ringo Starr thumping the tubs and many other notables also appeared on other tracks across the 2 LPs they released.

Incredible Bongo Band – Apache

This tune was first released on the 1973 Bongo Rock LP although it was until much later in the decade when pioneers like DJ Kool Herc and of course Grandmaster Flash backspinning two copies of this tune plucked it from obscurity and showcased the break for the B Boys. He done this live on two 2 x turntables and a mixer:

Grandmaster Flash – Apache (Turntable Mix)

And then Salaam Remi produced this banger for Nas’ 6th studio LP in 2003. Also released as the first single this tune is simply badness and marked a return to form for Mr Jones after a steady decline in the intensity of his work after he dropped the classic mid nineties joint ‘Illmatic’

Nas – Made You Look

The Incredible Bongo Band has been sampled many times over by drum and bass artists as well and I’ll be whacking up some examples online over the next few days. In the meantime here’s a little list of others tunes that took a chunk out of Apache:

2 Live Crew – “Megamixx”
Apache – “The Beginning”
Breeze – “Watch the Hook”
Busta Rhymes – “What the Fuck You Want!!”
Busy Bee – “Old School”
Chubb Rock – “3 Men at Chung King”
Coldcut – “Say Kids, What Time is It?”
Dee Patten – “Who’s the Bad Man”
Digital – “Metro”
DJ Jazzy Jeff & the Fresh Prince – “Live at Union Square”
Double D & Steinski – “Lesson 1”
Double D & Steinski – “Lesson 2”
Double D & Steinski – “Lesson 3”
Everlast – “Syndicate”
Faith Evans ft Black Rob – “Love Like This”
Freddie Foxx – “Stop Look & Listen”
Freestylers – “Breaker Beats Pt 2”
Future Sound of London – “We Have Explosive”
Geto Boys – “Do it Like a G.O.”
Goldie – “Inner City Life”
Grandmaster Flash & the Furious Five – “Freelance”
Hammer – “Turn this Mutha Out”
Insane Poetry – “The House That Dripped Blood”
J. Majik – “Your Sound”
Jive All Stars – “No Stoppin'”
Jurassic 5 – “Jurass Finish First”
Kool G Rap – “Men at Work”
Kool Moe Dee – “Way Way Back”
KRS-One – “Who are the Pimps?”
Leaders of the New School – “My Ding a Ling”
LL Cool J – “You Can’t Dance”
MC Paul Barman – “Burping and Farting”
Ministere Amer – “Le Droit Chemin”
Missy Elliot – “We Run This”
Moby – “Machete”
Nas – “Made You Look”
Roxy Breaks – “Apache Rock”
Run-DMC – “What’s it All About?”
Schoolly D – “Housing the Joint”
Sugarhill Gang – “Apache Rap”
Tone Loc – “Ace is in the House”
Ultramagnetic MCs – “MC’s Ultra”
Ultramagnetic MCs – “We’re Ultra III”
West Street Mob – “Break Dance Electric Boogie”
Young MC – “Know How”
Young MC – “Watch the Hook”
SHY FX – This Style
Shy FX – Mad Apache
Chase n Status – Against All Odds